Sunday, November 26, 2006

Daf Yomi - Beitza 30 - Seven Esrogim

Kollel Iyun HaDaf

(Answer from Kollel Iyun Hadaf)

Michael Post asked:

The Gemara states (concerning someone in Eretz Yisrael) that if
someone had 7 esrogim for 7 days (he designated one for each day),
then one opinion states that he may eat each one immediately after
using it, while the other opinion holds that he may not eat each one
until the end of the day. Thus, on day two, according to all
opinions, he can eat the esrog that was only designated for day one.

The Gemara then states (just a bit later…) that outside of Eretz
Yisrael, there is a Rabbinic decree that forbids the esrog from being
eaten on the eighth day.

My question… If someone outside of Eretz Yisrael designated 7
esrogim for 7 days (actually, 6, because of Shabbos), how would the
d'rabbanan work? Is the person not allowed to eat ANY of the esrogim
until after Simchas Torah? That doesn't seem to make a whole lot of
sense. Is the person only not allowed to eat the last one the next
day? That seems counterintuitive as well, since if there was a true
safek on the day, all the other ones should have a one-day delay in
eating them as well. Is this person "off the hook" on the d'rabbanan
because of his designation? Not sure why that should be the case either…

In reality, whether the day we outside of Eretz Yisrael call Shmini
Azeres is really Hoshanah Rabbah or not should be irrelevant. Since
clearly the halacha is that we do NOT take lulav/esrog on the "eighth
day", when we purchase the esrog, we have intention to use it on the
6 days that we use it. Therefore, the esrog should become permitted
at the end of Hoshana Rabbah the same way as for all of the other days.

Michael Post, usa
The Kollel replies:

Dear Michael,

Thanks for your query. I would like to sort out the different
statements, and I think that then all will fit into place.

The Din of a person using seven Esrogim for seven days is identical
to Eretz Yisrael and Chutz la'Aretz. The issue is whether it is
designated for the Mitzvah only and thus may be eaten immediately
after the Mitzvah was performed, or does it apply to the entire day,
and may not be eaten until the next day. As I said, the Din is the
same everywhere. The fact that in Chutz la'Aretz it might be the
second or third day of the Chag has no bearing on the situation. The
designation applies to the Mitzvah relevant on that specific day (or
the entire day) only.

The second issue is in the case of using one Esrog for the entire
Chag: when does it become permissible in Chutz la'Aretz. And in this
case the rabbinic decree forbids using it on the eighth day since in
reality it might be the seventh day and the mitzvah of Esrog still
applies. You may ask, "But nevertheless we do not observe the Mitzvah
of Esrog on the eighth day, so why should we treat it as if the
Mitzvah applies on this day also?"

There are various answers offered by the Rishonim for this question.
The most common answer is that if the people would be permitted to
benefit from the Esrog on this day, they would come to the ultimate
conclusion that it is the eighth day of the Chag, and there would be
no need to eat in the Sukah either. Thus the prohibition of eating
the Esrog applies to remind us that it is indeed a Safek.

All the best.
Y. Landy